Merton supported the 35th Children in Need this year with a range of fundraising activities, from bench pressing footballers to danceathons, cake sales and raffles.

Perhaps the biggest attraction of the day was AFC Wimbledon striker, and the so-called ‘World’s Strongest Footballer’, Bayo Akinfenwa bench pressing Pudsey Bear.

Mr Akinfenwa, who is nicknamed ‘The Beast’, did five reps lifting a ten stone Pudsey at Paul Strank Roofing in Weir Road on Friday.

Wimbledon Times:

Mr Akinfenwa showed that he has earned his nickname of 'World's Strongest Footballer'

Paul Strank Roofing has been raising money for Children in Need for 30 years, and have so far raised £1,065 of its £2,000 target from the event.

Mr Akinfenwa said: "As footballers we’re very lucky to do what we do and we’re all blessed, so I think there’s a massive responsibility to give back.

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Mr Akinfenwa and Pudsey Bear 

"I’m not like other footballers and my strength makes me a bit different, makes me stand out a bit, so it’s good to use that to do some good. And it’s all a bit of fun.

"No matter how big or small, any way I can help others like this I’ll always do it."

Journalists and staff at the Wimbledon Guardian raised just over £107 for the charity with delicious treats including a festive chocolate log, cream horns and carrot cake on sale in the office.

A raffle with prizes including a £10 gift voucher for Italian restaurant Zizzis and a free platter and drinks from Nandos helped boost the overall total.

The technology specialists Retail It raised £335 by raffling off an iPad, which was won by Anne-Sophie MacKenzie of Farrow & Ball, which has a store in Wimbledon Village.

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Retail IT's Roselle Rodger and Marc Stevenson draw the lucky winner of the iPad out of the hat

Matthew Carlton, who works in marketing at the firm, said: "We were really happy with how much we raised. Everyone got into the spirit of things."

And over in Mitcham the Just’T’Learn Independent School raised £150 for Children in Need with a sponsored pyjama dance-a-thon, as well as a cake sale and raffle.

The students also completed a graffiti artwork of Pudsey Bear at Jus’T’Learn’s main site at Commonside East.

Wimbledon Times:

Pupils and staff took part in a pyjama dance-a-thon led by dance teacher Georgia Cook Mackenzie (left)

Deputy director at JUS Education Zarah Jussab said: "We are happy with the amount we raised. Being a small organisation, it’s a lot for us.

"Last year we kept it very basic and just did a pyjama day. We raised about £50, so this year we’ve tripled that."

Wimbledon Times:

The students also held a cake and sweets sale

Children in Need broke records this year after raising more than £37 million by the end of the televised show on Friday, November 13.

To donate to Paul Strank Roofing’s Justgiving fund, visit: